How well do you take care of yourself from a social or emotional standpoint? I know that our husbands are our best friends but they do not need to be our only source for social interaction. I talked briefly about the positive effects friendship can provide in “Orgasm, Chocolate and Friends…Oh My!!!” I am now referring to having friends as a support system.
I was thinking about how important friendships are to children. Young children will even pal around with a pet, stuffed animal or have imaginary friends. In our teen years our friends have a big influence over the type of personality we develop. As we get married many women lose their identity. Sometimes we get ultra focused on pleasing our husband that we lose sight of the things we enjoyed before we were married. I am not saying that you should be hanging out in clubs with your girlfriends if that’s what you did with them prior to being married. You can easily connect with a friend on a short walk or over a cup of coffee. All you really need is one good friend. Quality is much more important than quantity. It is great to know that I have friends with whom I can laugh, cry, pray with, vent to or get advice from. My friends are some of my biggest fans as well as my toughest critics and I know it is because they love me unconditionally.
It is a known fact that friendships can lower blood pressure, heart rates, cholesterol and stress. Have you ever become so consumed in an activity with a friend that issues that had been hanging over your head suddenly took a back burner for a bit? It is a great feeling to be able to pray or laugh with a friend when times are tough.
In the past I have become so consumed with trying to be a good wife and a good mother that I lose my sense of self. While it’s true that I am a wife as well as a mother, I am also my own person. It is so important to have interests outside marriage. In the long run they enrich the quality of my marriage. Plus, my husband fell in love with that person so why would I ever want to get rid of her?
That last line is so important and something I think so many people – including myself – forget about. I feel so much more enriched when I have other people in my life that I can care about, and other people in my life that care about me. I think it makes me, and my relationship healthier.